Monday, November 2, 2009


The world's greatest cartoonist has taken on the Bible, respectfully illustrating the entire tale with finely hatched pen and ink drawings. Some will be started that the man who brought us "Fritz the Cat" and "Big Ass Comics" now brings us The Book of Genesis Illustrated by R. Crumb ($24.95, W.W. Norton), and they might expect to be dodging lightning bolts for even considering picking up a copy, but don't worry. Crumb is respectful.

"It was hard to draw God," Crumb told USA Today in a rare phone interview from his home in France.

"Should God just be a bright light? Should I use word balloons? Should God be a woman?

"I ended up with the old stereotypical Charlton Heston kind of God, long beard, very masculine. I used a lot of white-out, a lot of corrections when I tried to draw God."

An illustration from the "new" old book; click to enlarge

Even more rare than that interview with USA Today, is this conversation between Crumb and Harvey Pekar, author of American Splendor. As you know, Crumb illustrated some of the episodes in Harvey's autobiographical series, and as you know these two are famously cranky bastards. They get along like two oldtime cartoon characters, and in fact they are. Warning: the conversation contains language for intelligent adults who are not offended by the popular vernacular--in other words, the way most people speak every day. If you don't like it, don't listen.

Crumb & Pekar online

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